Postal Service Impact to Local Business

Central VA - Local businesses taking in news about proposed postal service adjustments say the changes could be crippling.

Sharon Suprun runs her business and product distribution from home, counting heavily on the post office. But, she says that decision has cost her.

"I've had some people that have ordered things back in October and they didn't get the items," said Supron, who calls her company Virginia Baskets and Gifts.

She has the tracking number that shows she mailed the products, and a note from the postal services saying her shipment left the seller facility and was in transit....but it never got there.

Experiences like these make the thought of products taking longer, more mail going through the Sandston Distribution Center, haunts her.

"It's very difficult to know that you're trying to have a good business, and you primarily out of you home mail order, and for things not to get to the people that are interested," said Suprun. "I just have to go back and ship whatever was not received and basically I'm going to take a hit in the business."

The Amelia Bulletin Monitor depends on reliable service too.

"People want the news and they want it timely," said publisher Ann Salster. Recently, she says she hasn't gotten that timely service from the post office.

"There isn't a day that goes by that from somebody that didn't get their paper somewhere outside of Amelia County," says Salster. She says the paper has considered expanding online instead, but many of the customers don't even have Internet.

"To be perfectly honest, we don't have the resources to bump up our online," said Salster.

Now, she says postal changes expected to slow services could reduce customers and kill some small papers.: "To add days to that…it's just going to be awful," said Salster. "I think it's gonna really hurt your local community newspapers and they're already hurting in the revenue side, but if you cut subscriptions back it's gonna be really bad."

Sharon Suprun says she might consider alternatives like UPS or FedEx. The Ameilai Monitor tells us it will look into expanding its sales from stands at local businesses.

We also spoke ot the Hope well News and Patriot. A spokesperson says if Saturday mail is eliminated, the paper might have to reconfigure its print schedule.